National Museum Lagos Library and Archives Artistic Expression Grant

WhatsApp Image 2023 11 06 at 11.32.29As part of both its programs on Digital Humanities and Nigerian History and Heritage Conservation, IFRA-Nigeria has launched a research project on the digitization of the Archives of the National Museum Lagos in Collaboration with the National Commission for Museums and Monuments in her ongoing project that is funded from the grant that forms a part of a wider project entitled Le Fonds de Solidarité pour les Projets Innovant (FSPI Project).

The National Museum Lagos Library and Archives holds one of the largest collections of Maps, Ethnography pictures documentation, Intelligence and Assessment reports of Nigeria districts and Provinces, Archaeological field notes, and Ethnographic photographic collections in Nigeria, covering different provinces and regions in Nigeria, the library maintains special and archival collections such as timetables, pamphlet, and rare books and journals. It also holds a substantial collection of mid-20th to early 21st-century newspapers.  A substantial part of these archives is being digitized through the FSPI project and will be available online for public access by the first quarter of 2024.

This grant was written into the FSPI project to facilitate and support artists to develop artistic actions that will be able to develop original narratives on the importance and originality of these collections, their crucial dissemination to a wider audience, and the importance of 'bringing back' these historical and cultural elements to different communities through digitization. Participation in/co-construction with the public/communities within the artistic project is highly encouraged.

The museum collections include amongst other things:

A) detailed collections of well-annotated maps of different districts and provinces of Nigeria. The maps are in good condition
B) a wide range of assessment and intelligence reports on Nigerian districts and provinces. Intelligence and assessment reports were produced in the early 1920s and these are more of an ethnography of the different provinces and districts
C) early 19th-century ethnography pictures of different rituals and practices of the people of Nigeria as captured by ethnographers
D) Ethnography report of surveys carried out by the colonialist government officers and staff of the Department of Antiquity
E) Private picture albums deposited in the archives with different subject matter
F) Report on archaeological excavation and findings in Nigeria
G) Annual report of the Department of Antiquity.



  • Grants will be awarded to cover costs incurred while working on the archival collections of the National Museum  Lagos for your proposed project.


  • We are seeking innovative and impactful projects in various artistic disciplines including music, dance, theatre, visual art, design, performance, and more. Emerging artists or artists’ collective and women are highly encouraged to submit proposals for consideration.
  • At the discretion of the selection committee, five (5) grants will be granted these grants may be awarded to an individual applicant or a team.

How to apply

To apply, please submit the following:

  1. A project proposal that:
    • Describes the proposed project, its feasibility, and methodology
    • Explains the significance of the approach
    • Propose specific outcomes (e.g. creative or artistic work) that will result from this project
  2. A curriculum vitae
  3. Applicants should submit one (1) letter of recommendation from someone qualified to judge the quality, feasibility, and significance of the proposal and the qualifications of the applicant to complete the project to be sent in support of their proposed project.

All applications should be submitted to the following email on before 11:59 PM of the 26th of November, 2023.

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